27 Oct 2011



Digging swimming pools by hand in Key West, Florida, Jack Reacher is as tanned and as fit as he's ever been. A local girl says he looks like a condom filled with walnuts. Being invisible has become a habit. He doesn't want to be found.

So when a private detective comes nosing around and asking questions, Reacher is not pleased. Especially when he later finds the guy dead. With his fingertips sliced off. Why was he so determined to find him? What does the vicious Wall Street honcho Hook Hobie have to do with it? And what about the reappearance of a woman from Reacher's own troubled past.
....... Outer back cover.

FIRST SENTENCE(Prologue): Hook Hobie owed the whole of his life to a secret nearly thirty years old.

MEMORABLE MOMENT (Page 219): It was his favourite chair, chosen in the way men choose things, for comfort and familiarity rather than for style and suitability.

KEEP IT OR NOT?: A reading group book, the 75th read in my 100+ Reading Challenge, I shall be returning this.

"Like a condom filled with walnuts"? Pleaseeeeee. So Cheesy  but then this just about sums up the whole of this novel for me.

The 3rd outing for ex-military policeman Jack Reacher though this read well enough as a stand-alone novel.

On the face of it this read like many an American thriller except for some reason it didn't feel quite right to me - small wonder than that Lee Child isn't an American writer but an Englishman writing as an American - and not very convincingly in my opinion.

Far too long, at over 500 pages I felt this novel could have been much, much shorter if only the author hadn't dedicated so much time in describing things - ok, so some of it was interesting, one might even say necessary, but to take almost 5 pages to describe how the one-armed villain undressed for bed was surely over 4 pages too long.

It wasn't only the length of the book that had me struggling either as, to be honest, I found I couldn't connect with any of the characters and found Hook Hobie (the villain)in particular to be unconvincing. Bordering on being a pantomime baddie, he seemed to come across almost as a parody of what a villain should be. And as for the plot - rather plodding and not as action packed as I had hoped, I couldn't help but be disappointed as I had heard such wonderful things about the author.

Not to my taste then but hey ho each to their own, I know Lee Child's has a huge following including it turns out all of the members of my reading group who all enjoyed this book.


Mary (Bookfan) said...

Really? FIVE pages to describe how the villain put on his PJs??? Ugh.

Monalisa said...

Alright. Not very interesting to me either.

Suko said...

Petty, thanks for your honest review. May your next book "knock your socks off" (how's that for cheesy?)!

Kelly said...

I've heard of this series, but this doesn't sound very good to me.

Hope your next book isn't a disappointment.

StarTraci said...

Yeah, that condom line is just weird. And I don't think I would want five pages of an undressing one-armed man either. Alas. Thanks for the heads up.


anilkurup said...

I wonder at your perseverance ,- to pursue a book till the other cover, even when you felt that the book was not your kind and taste. I cannot , in fact there are quite a few books in my collection that I have not pursued beyond the first fifty pages. That is not to tell or deny some are acclaimed and critiqued well.

As you said each one to himself.

Short Poems said...

Thanks for your honest review Petty.
Have a great weekend!

Mamakucingbooks said...

I have one of Lee Child books that I havent read. Hope that one is better. Forgotten the title. Have too many books yet to read :p

dr.antony said...

Hi Petty
After so long ! How are you?
I was held up at work and missed you and your posts.

Betty Manousos@ Cut and Dry said...

ok, that's a really disappointing book.

however, another great review.

betty xx

naida said...

I would have struggled with the length and long descriptions. Thanks for the honest review!